“Porches are America’s lost rooms.”
Barbara Grizzuti Harrison
One of my favorite spring rituals is setting up the front porch for warm weather living. This year, I looked at the porch furniture coming out of storage and suddenly felt I had it all wrong. I decided to move everything around. Do you ever do this? I really love the new design so much more and can’t figure out how I didn’t set it up this way all along. The porch seems more spacious. The conversation easier. Movement around the porch smoother. There is much more of the pretty outdoor rug, my design starting point, to see and enjoy. I even had room to add a bar area! It’s not a huge space but it lives big. I had to laugh, as I sat on my “newly” designed porch reading the latest Architectural Digest issue, when the words of Bunny Williams, a favorite designer, jumped out at me: “I get so upset when people ask what’s new in decorating? Just take what you have and make it look new.” Point well taken Bunny!
You can read about how I first created an outdoor room on the front porch here. Tour the redesigned space and let me know which version of the porch you like more. But don’t be seduced by those gorgeous blue hydrangeas on the old porch….They’ll be making another appearance at a porch near you, soon!
One of the biggest changes I made was moving this console table previously used as a room divider to the focal point of the porch. The plate rack with its bird house and green tole garden plate was already on the wall. It makes so much more sense to put the console there. The lanterns and urn are the same as when the table was on the side of the porch. Now they really all work together. The table is also in the middle of the seating area and can be used to serve food when entertaining on the porch.
Treating you to lots of eye candy today to inspire your spring or Easter décor and entertaining! From the welcome of spring blooms on our front porch to Easter around the house and at the table, there are ideas galore to take away. Enjoy!
An ice cream parlor chair repurposed into a planter greets visitors with a chalkboard welcome sign. Tutorial here.
“Easter spells out beauty, the rare beauty of new life.” S. D. Gordon
Today I’m sharing an easy make-ahead Easter centerpiece that captures the magic of spring. I will show you how ordinary pots of supermarket flowers are elevated in a beautiful arrangement that gives you a big bang for the buck. I especially love how this arrangement captures the sense of emergence of new life into a new season.
In the depth of winter, when most of my zone 6 garden is hibernating, there is the most magnificent blooming tree in my garden. It seems as if overnight, the bare limbs of this tree are filled with clusters of feathery flowers up and down its branches. Their fragrance is intoxicating and beguiling. The spidery flowers with long crinkly petals vary in color from yellow to golden orange and burgundy.
My witch hazel’s flowers are golden orange with deep burgundy centers.
This year our front entrance is showing some swagger for the holidays. Instead of a wreath, I made a large swag with evergreens cut from around my garden then adorned it with ribbons, pine cones, pheasant feathers, ornaments in gold and burgundy and even some jingle bells. I love the scent of fresh greens to greet one and all at the holidays. Take a look at how it came together.
“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” Anne of Green Gables
This fall, I am filled with nostalgia. The bright joyful displays of pumpkins, mums and gourds I usually bring home in abundance, are tugging at my heartstrings. Continue reading
Memorial Day became a Federal Holiday in 1971 and is observed on the last Monday of May. It originated as Decoration Day after the American Civil War in 1868 to honor all the Americans who died in that conflict. Since WW I, it now honors all Americans who died in all wars. Many towns celebrate with parades and memorial ceremonies. Many families visit graves to lay wreaths on their loved ones’ graves. It is unofficially the start to summer and celebrated with BBQs and get togethers. On a recent vacation to the New Jersey shore, towns were proudly displaying their patriotism in red, white and blue. From quaint Victorians in Cape May to grand hotels like Congress Hall, from hometown fire halls to front porches and private gardens everywhere, patriotism was on full glorious display. Wherever you are celebrating the holiday, honor the brave men and women who have served and paid the ultimate price to fight for our country.